Jim Smith has practiced law in Arkansas for over two decades with his practice principally focused on advising companies and executives regarding a full range of business advisory and transactional law matters, with a particular emphasis on corporate governance and finance (including capital raises and securities law matters), strategic initiatives, mergers and acquisitions, compliance with regulatory obligations, executive compensation and compensatory plans and business contractual matters. He routinely advises Boards of Directors and controlling shareholders with respect to fiduciary duty matters and shareholder activism.
Prior to becoming Of Counsel with Rose Law Firm, Jim was a founding partner of Smith Hurst. Jim is a licensed Certified Public Accountant (registered inactive) and serves as a Commissioner on the Arkansas Economic Development Commission and as a member of the Board of Trustees of Arkansas Tech University under appointment by Governor Asa Hutchinson. Mid-South Super Lawyers has repeatedly named him one of the top fifty lawyers in Arkansas. In the inaugural edition of The Arkansas 200, published by Arkansas Business, he was recognized among Arkansas’s top influencers, and subsequently honored in The Arkansas 250 for multiple years as well.
Areas of Service
Jim’s practice experience is extensive and spans the full range of business advisory and transactional law. He routinely counsels companies across diverse industries in a myriad of business matters including capital raising, advising Boards of Directors, senior management, executives and controlling shareholders regarding governance and fiduciary duty matters, compliance with regulatory obligations, ordinary course of business contracts, executive compensation and compensatory plans, financial and lending matters (including private placement of securities), venture capital, private equity and commercial lending matters, taxation, mergers and acquisitions and real estate related matters. A meaningful part of his practice is also devoted to the representation of angel investors, private equity investors and venture capital firms in making investments in business enterprises.
Campbell v. Commissioner: The Eighth Circuit Adds Uncertainty to the Tax Treatment Regarding the Receipt of a Profits-Only Partnership Interest in Exchange for Services, 61 Tax Notes 11, December 13, 1993.
Debt Cancellation Contracts: A Forgotten Asset, 112 The Banking Law Journal 9, 918, October, 1995.
SEC Lifts Ban on General Solicitation, Adopts “Bad Actor” Rules and Proposes Changes to Regulation D and Form D, 2013 Ark. Law Notes, at http://media.law.uark.edu/arklawnotes/2013/07/24/sec-lifts-ban-on-general-solicitation-adopts-bad-actor-rules-and-proposes-changes-to-regulation-d-and-form-d/ (Jul. 24, 2013).
Since 2007, Jim has been recognized in Best Lawyers in America™ in its list of the best lawyers in Arkansas in the field of Mergers and Acquisitions. During this time period he has also been recognized in Chambers & Partners USA as a leading lawyer in the fields of securities, corporate taxation and corporate law. In referring to his high-level practice and commitment to the needs of his clients, that highly acclaimed research-based directory writes of him, “James Smith focuses primarily on M&A and is described as a great lawyer by market sources.” It has also stated that “in advising clients in the area of M&A, corporate tax and securities regulation he has been referred to as “bright, capable and good with clients,” ”diligent,” “great to work with” and that he is a “prominent figure in Northwest Arkansas and has led a number of the large business transactions at a first-class level.”
In addition to his recognition as a top Mergers and Acquisitions attorney, Jim is also recognized in Best Lawyers in America™ in its list of the best lawyers in Arkansas in the fields of Tax Law, Corporate Law, Banking and Finance Law, Securitization and Structured Finance Law and Securities and Capital Markets Law.
Jim was recognized by the Northwest Arkansas Business Journal in 2017 as part of its C-Suite Honors, an award given to the top business executives in the region.
Since 2009, Jim has also been listed in Mid-South Super Lawyers in the field of Mergers and Acquisitions, including multiple recognitions as one of the Top 50 Lawyers in the State of Arkansas.
For over a decade, Jim has maintained an AV ethics rating by Martindale-Hubbell which is the highest rating available for a lawyer’s legal ability and professional ethics.
In 2000, Jim was named to the Arkansas Business 40 Under Forty list and the Northwest Arkansas Business Journal 40 Under Forty list, and in 2001, he was inducted into the Arkansas Tech University Hall of Distinction.
New York University School of Law
Masters of Law (LL.M.) in Taxation (1995)
University of Arkansas School of Law
Juris Doctorate, cum laude (1994)
Arkansas Law Review, Member
Arkansas Tech University
Bachelor of Science, Accounting, cum laude (1991)
Recipient of 1991 Wall Street Journal Award as the Top Student in the School of Business
Member, 1988 AIC Champion Baseball Team